The thirteenth Mapping Ancient Africa seminar was delivered by Andrea Manica on the 18th May 2023. In the seminar Andrea introduced the pastclim R package and gave examples of how it can be applied to address questions related to human evolution and dispersal.
Related publication: Leonardi, M., Hallett, E.Y., Beyer, R., Krapp, M. & Manica, A. (2023) pastclim 1.2: an R package to easily access and use paleoclimatic reconstructions. Ecography 2023, e06481. DOI: 10.1111/ecog.06481
The seminar will be delivered via Zoom. The link for the seminar can be obtained from the MAA Slack channel or by contacting the chair of this seminar (William Gosling). If you want to know more about the Mapping Ancient Africa project visit our web pages and please do not hesitate to get in contact if you want to get involved.
The seminar delivered by Emma Mbua (National Museums of Kenya) on the 13th April 2023 was the twelfth in the Mapping Ancient Africa series. The seminar highlighted new finds from archaeological sites in eastern Africa that have yielded bones of various animals, including early humans.
The 11th Mapping Ancient Africa seminar took place on Thursday 16 March (2023). The seminar was delivered by Hannah Keller (Yale University) and highlighted her ongoing research into ostrich egg shells and environmental change she is undertaking as part of the “Malawi Ancient Lifeways and Peoples” project.
Title: Newly discovered fossil sites in Kenya and their implications in human evolution discussions
Related publication: Mbua, E., Kusaka, S., Kunimatsu, Y., Geraads, D., Sawada, Y., Brown, F.H., Sakai, T., Boisserie, J., Saneyoshi, M., Omuombo, C., Muteti, S., Hirata, T., Hayashida, A., Iwano, H., Danhara, T., Bobe, R., Jicha, B. & Nakatsukasa, M. (2016) Kantis: A new Australopithecus site on the shoulders of the Rift Valley near Nairobi, Kenya. Journal of Human Evolution 94, 28-44. DOI: 10.1016/j.jhevol.2016.01.006
The seminar will be delivered via Zoom. The link for the seminar can be obtained from the MAA Slack channel or by contacting the chair of this seminar Rahab Kinyanjui. If you want to know more about the Mapping Ancient Africa project visit our web pages and please do not hesitate to get in contact if you want to get involved.
I am excited to announce that I have recently joined the “Advisory Editorial Board” of The Holocene journal. Many thanks to editor-in-chief John Matthews for the invitation. Interesting to join a very experienced team, which includes both my PhD and post-doc supervisors; the esteemed Frank Mayle and Mark Bush! I look forward to receiving interesting new papers to examine.
The Holocene journal publishes research, review and forum papers focused on environmental change during the Holocene (last 11,700 years). It encourages the submission of manuscripts with an interdisciplinary approach covering palaeoenvironments, palaeoclimate, palaeoecology, palaeohydrology, palaeopedology, palaeoceanography and geo-archaeology. So if you have a some research in this area that you are looking for a home for please check out the details aims and scope, and criteria on the journal web page, click here.
The seminar will be delivered via Zoom. The link for the seminar can be obtained from the MAA Slack channel or by contacting the chair of this seminar Lynne Quick. If you want to know more about the Mapping Ancient Africa project visit our web pages and please do not hesitate to get in contact if you want to get involved.
The Mapping Ancient Africa (MAA) project is offering five bursaries to help African based and/or early career researchers^ attend the up coming INQUA Rome congress. Each bursary will around Euro 1000 and should be used towards covering the cost of registration, accommodation and/or travel for the congress.
Abstract submitted to INQUA Rome congress either to the Mapping Ancient Africa session, or to another session on a related topic (Deadline 1 November 2022).
Commitment to contributing an article for consideration to be published in the proposed MAA special issue of Quaternary International; for frame of references of the MAA project click here.
To apply submit the following information via emails to William Gosling as the corresponding Principle Investigator of the project. Applications should be clearly marked MAA-Application-YourName in the subject line:
Evidence of submission of an abstract to the INQUA Rome congress (copy of confirmation email and abstract).
Letter of motivation, including fit of the proposed article to the MAA aims and goals and statement of commitment to submit an article for consideration to be published in the Mapping Ancient Africa special issue of Quaternary International^^ (not more than 1 page)
Short academic CV, including highlight of up to 5 published articles indicating the scientific importance and your role in the publication (not more than 2 pages).
In the event of more applications being received than funding is available awards will be made by the MAA team (PIs and co-PIs) on the basis of the fit of the research to the MAA aims and goals. To receive funding receipts for all the expenses incurred will need to be provided (following INQUA regulations).
Following the postponement of our previous seminar I am pleased to announce the next Mapping Ancient Africa (MAA) seminar (the new number 6 in the series) will take place on Thursday 6 October at 17:00 (CEST).
Title: Pleistocene climate variability in eastern Africa influenced hominin evolution
Related publication: Foerster, V., Asrat, A., Bronk Ramsey, C., Brown, E.T., Chapot, M.S., Deino, A., Duesing, W., Grove, M., Hahn, A., Junginger, A., Kaboth-Bahr, S., Lane, C.S., Opitz, S., Noren, A., Roberts, H.M., Stockhecke, M., Tiedemann, R., Vidal, C.M., Vogelsang, R., Cohen, A.S., Lamb, H.F., Schaebitz, F. & Trauth, M.H. (2022) Pleistocene climate variability in eastern Africa influenced hominin evolution. Nature Geoscience. DOI: 10.1038/s41561-022-01032-y
The seminar will be delivered via Zoom. The link for the seminar can be obtained from the MAA Slack channel or by contacting the chair of this seminar Stefanie Kaboth-Bahr. If you want to know more about the Mapping Ancient Africa project visit our web pages and please do not hesitate to get in contact if you want to get involved.
As part of this years BSc Palaeoecology course at the University of Amsterdam we visited the Department of Archaeology. Organised by Anja Fischer we visited the human bone collection, the animal bone collection and the archaeobotany section. Amazing collections and lots of opportunities for cross faculty projects and teaching.
In addition to explaining the physical reference collections Anja also explained how she has been developing data mining techniques to allow information to be synthesised from the thousands of archaeological reports across the Netherlands.
She used this approach to make new discoveries about the role of urban farming and ruralisation in Dutch history. Her findings formed a report for the Dutch national heritage organisation (Rijksdienst voor het Cultureel Erfgoed) which can be downloaded for free (in English).
Fischer, A., van Londen, H., Blonk, A., Visser, R.M. & Renes, J. (2021) Urban Farming and Ruralisation in The Netherlands (1250-1850): Unravelling farming practice and the use of (open) space by synthesising archaeological reports using text mining. Nederlandse Archeologische Rapporten 68. Download free here.